Released on July 10th, 2020
A few years ago, I created a tool and a short book for helping people grow their professional practices. It covers 10 ‘multipliers’ that can amplify the impact and results you’re creating in the world.
And while I created it with coaches, therapists and other transformation professionals in mind, I’ve had plenty of feedback from people outside those professions telling me how useful it is.
See, whether you’re a transformation professional or not, you’re going to discover that these 10 multipliers apply to almost everyone (at least, with a little creativity). In this week’s Friday Shot of Clarity, we’re going to explore Multiplier Number 2 – Compelling Presence.
An easy way to describe this is being present in the moment and comfortable in your own skin. The reason presence is so compelling is it’s a characteristic everyone wants and when you have it, other people can feel it.
In row one, it’s pretty much the opposite of a compelling presence. In column one, you feel worried, stressed or anxious much of the time but believe everything would be okay if you could just change your circumstances. Now, this is a double bind because while it seems like “if only things on the outside would be okay, then I’d feel better inside”, but it’s actually the other way around. Just as you would have doubts about a stop-smoking treatment being offered by someone who smokes, in column one, a person’s lack of ease with themselves raises a question mark for potential clients.
This is why I often call column one, the “stuck” column. When people are in column one, they’re feeling stuck, but there’s good reason to be hopeful. Everyone can relate to feeling like “if only things on the outside would change then I would feel different”. It’s part of the journey.
In the second row – the “struggle” column – your presence is something you’re working at, and that’s the challenge. When you’re working at it, people pick up on that. They sense you’re “doing” something. You do your best to be positive, but it’s difficult. You wish you felt the way you try to come across, but you often feel like a fraud. If you identify with this one, I have some good news for you: this is a very normal part of your personal transformation. Many times, when people think “Who am I to do this?” it’s often because you’ve had a big insight, spark, passion, or a sense of direction but you lack confidence.
We’ve been conditioned for a world of working in a factory or office; we learned in school to not speak up for ourselves and to follow the rules. When you start to follow your own truth and path, it shakes up some of those lessons. That sense of “who am I to be saying this, who am I to be doing this?” can be a signal that you’re heading in the right direction (believe it or not). Once again, you have reason to be hopeful.
In row three you focus on maintaining a positive cheerful attitude. You make a point of being in a good state when you’re with your clients. You may even be an expert at managing your state. Maybe you reframe yourself or just do your best to think happy thoughts. If you’re in row three – the “success” column – it’s probably working, at least to some degree. It’s giving you some of the results you want to get in quite a positive way. However, what I often find with people in row three is it’s tiring and draining to manage yourself all the time. It takes a lot of energy and you may find yourself wondering if it’s possible to enjoy what you have and connect with clients without it being so draining.
That brings us to the fourth row, the exponential one. It’s a different dimension of presence, precisely because you’re not working at it. You walk your talk and you’re living proof of the impact of your work. You feel comfortable in yourself and people are drawn to your presence. You practice what you preach and it radiates in how you show up. You’re comfortable in your own skin and that’s compelling because on some level, that’s what everyone wants.
Here’s another way of thinking about this: Who you are and how you’re showing up is proof of the impact of what you do. There is a consistency in what you preach and you hold yourself to the same standard. That’s the exponential row.
Now the way you make progress and improve in this multiplier is interesting; it’s what I would call subtracting. Rather than asking what do I need to do to have more presence, the question is, what’s been getting in the way of it?
If you look at little babies, they have an incredible presence which is why people are drawn to them. They radiate comfort in their own skin. That compelling presence is already inside babies and it’s already there inside you.
If the question is “What’s been getting in the way?”, the answer is what I call “contaminated thinking”.
Contaminated thinking arises from the mistaken belief that your feelings are letting you know about something other than your moment to moment thinking. Your feelings aren’t letting you know about your past or your future, your bank balance, other people or whatever else may be happening at the time.
You’re always living in the experience of Thought in the moment and as soon as you see that, it brings you back into the present.
The best way I’ve found to deepen your understanding of this and start to improve your compelling presence is by exploring the principles behind clarity. Let me share a great example.
Mahima Shrestha is a crisis management consultant and was a student on our Clarity Coach Training programme. Her story is fascinating.
She’s one of the people who was caught in the devastating Nepal earthquake in April 2015. In the midst of the earthquake, she suddenly remembered reading something in my book, CLARITY: 100% of your feeling is coming from Thought in the moment.
She described going from feeling terrified (which is totally understandable in that situation), to being peaceful and present, realizing that her wellbeing comes from within her.
When I interviewed her later, another student asked, “so how did you know you were safe?” She said, “I wasn’t physically safe; the roof could have fallen in on me at any moment, but I knew I was psychologically safe. There was nothing that could hurt who I really am. There were things that could hurt my body but nothing that could hurt the essence of who I am.”
She realized that even though you can be in great physical danger, you’re psychologically safe. This realization gave her a deep sense of peace and clarity that was so profound that other people who had been devastated by the earthquake picked up on it. She saw that the presence of a sane, present human being did something for those people.
This realization is impacting every aspect of her life and her work.
That’s the essence of compelling presence. Other people pick up on your clarity, on your comfort in your own skin, on your peace of mind, on your sanity, on your mental health. A second example is Deborah Banner. In the past, Deborah had felt uncomfortable in groups, but she became really impacted by the principles behind clarity and joined our programme. One day, partway through the programme, she was at a public gathering. A partner from a large London law firm came straight over to her (someone she’d never met before), and asked what she did. As Deborah talked with her, the partner said, “There’s something about you. You have a clarity and presence that I need in my company. Here’s my card; call me.” The person picked up on the clarity and presence that Deb has and it naturally compelled her. (In fact, Deb has such a lovely presence that we ended up hiring her to be the Client Experience Manager on TeamClarity).
The only thing that ever gets in the way is contaminated thinking. Like the sun behind the clouds, your clarity and compelling presence are always within you. They’re there behind the clouds of contaminated thinking, whether you’re aware of it or not. It’s still there so just keep exploring these principles and you’ll start awakening it more and more for yourself.
By the way, over the past week, I’ve created over 8 hours of lessons and case studies as part of my ‘How to share the 3 principles’ masterclass series. The topics are:
I’ve also created 17 brief case-study videos (15-20mins) with the help of my wonderful clients, on topics including:
– and many more
This is basically a deep dive into seeing this understanding more deeply for yourself, and sharing it with others so you can make a difference and help get it out there.
Also, we’ve opened the doors for new ClarityPro Members to join us until this Monday, July 13th at midnight Pacific time.
The ClarityPRO membership programme is designed to give you everything you need to:
- Share the inside-out understanding with anybody, on any topic, in any situation
- Find your voice, make a real difference and help get the principles out there
Click the link below to learn more and get registered.
Jamie Smart, Sunday Times Bestselling Author, Speaker and Executive Coach
PS A few things worth knowing…
1. For the first time, you can choose between ‘monthly’ or ‘annual’ membership
2. Annual members get a FREE ticket to a ClarityLive! event and monthly members can get a ticket at a super-low price (£39) The next event is this weekend, July 11-12 and my special guests are my dear friends and colleagues, Jan and Chip Chipman.
3. You get instant access to all the modules we’ve already created, as well as a new module each month plus group laser-coaching sessions with me personally.
4. The doors close this Monday, July 13th at midnight pst and won’t be opening again until the end of the year.
5. There’s a 30-day, 100% money-back guarantee, so there’s literally zero-risk when you join today.